Where Do Babies Go if they Die? Do They Go To Heaven or Hell?

by Jack Wellman on June 7, 2012 · Print Print · Email Email

If a baby, infant, young child, or toddler dies before they can know Jesus Christ, where do they go?  We are all born into sin but can babies go into the presence of the Lord since Jesus Christ is the only way to be saved (Acts 4:12)?  What does the Bible say is the fate of those young ones who die before they have had a chance to hear the gospel?  What about those with severe mental retardation?

Born into Sin

All humans are born into sin at birth (Psalm 51:5).  Even though they are incapable of understanding the gospel at birth, like every one of us, they too come into this world in a sinful state at birth and in fact, even in the womb (Psalm 58:3).  Since we are born into a sinful state, what about the young child, toddler, infant or baby that dies before having a chance to place their faith in the only name given to us whereby we might be saved (Acts 4:12)?

In the first place, no one really seeks after God (Rom 3:11).  There is not a person that has ever lived that is righteous or seeks after God on his or her own, with the exception of Jesus Christ Who is both Man and God (Rom 3:10-12).  Our good works are not good enough to be saved, despite the perceived innocence of babies (Isaiah 64:6).  Humans just naturally gravitate toward the tendency to sin because we were born this way.  We inherited the sinful nature from the first man, Adam (Rom 5:12,16,18).  We are constrained to be in a state of sinfulness until someone can be made sin for us.  Fortunately, this happened through Christ Jesus because, God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God (2 Cor 5:21). So the good news is that there is hope, but it is hope only for those who can comprehend the gospel of Jesus Christ and His work at Calvary.  Then where does this leave babies who die in infancy?  Where do they go?

Do Babies Go To Heaven
What baby can know that they are in a sinful state and that they are separated from God by their sins?

The Age of Accountability

The Bible does not clearly specify what the age of accountability is.  That age is the age in which a person can clearly understand that they are a sinner in need of a Savior and that the person sees themselves as unworthy to enter into eternal life.  What baby can know that they are in a sinful state and that they are separated from God by their sins?  How can they know the fact that they must place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ Who alone can save them?  A baby, infant, young child and even someone who has a severe mental handicap can not possibly discover that they have broken the holy Law of God and must be born again – regenerated – into a new creature in Christ.  How can they realize that they can receive forgiveness until they know they need it (1 John 1:9)?  Clearly they can not.

In the Old Testament, when through the hardness of the hearts of the nation Israel, they could not enter into the Promised Land, God did not hold these people’s children accountable because they were too young to understand.  Listen to what God says about these children in Deuteronomy 1:39, “And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not yet know good from bad—they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they will take possession of it.”

In one of the greatest prophecies of Jesus Christ in Isaiah 7:14-16 the prophet records this about Jesus: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.  He shall eat curds and honey when he knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good.  For before the boy knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land whose two kings you dread will be deserted.”  Here, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, God has Isaiah record the fact that “before the boy knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good” shows positive proof that the boy – in fact any boy or girl – can not know at a young age about choosing to refuse good or evil.

Where Do Babies Go if They Die?

Since we see from Scripture that young children, babies, infants, and toddlers are not held accountable for their being born into sin, where do they go if they die at a young age?  Is there any precedence from the Bible where we see an example of one so young dying and where they will be at?  Yes!  David and Bathsheba had a baby that was conceived in adultery.  The baby dies but the baby was innocent of their parent’s sins, particularly David’s.  What did David say after his and Bathsheba’s baby died?  David seemed to know with certainty where the baby would go because he said in 2 Samuel 12:23 that now that he is dead, why should I go on fasting? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.” Because the child could not return to David, he said that “I will go to him.”  Since we know that David’s throne is to be established forever in the Kingdom of Heaven, David must be thinking ahead to that Kingdom and realize that he will see this child again someday.  Psalm 132:11 says, The LORD has sworn to David, A truth from which He will not turn back; ‘Of the fruit of your body I will set upon your throne.”  Furthermore, David has been prophesied to reign in the future Kingdom, to they will serve the Lord their God and David their king, whom I will raise up for them (Jer 30:9).  Here is an actual reference to King David being resurrected and since he will be resurrected and he will “go to him” (the deceased child) in this Kingdom, we know that this baby will live again in the Kingdom and is not doomed to an eternal torment in hell.

There appears to be a special dispensation of God’s grace and mercy for those who die young and before the age of being held responsible for their salvation (an accountability).  Since God knows even the unborn, we can see that even aborted fetuses or the still born will also be in this Kingdom.  Jeremiah wrote, I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart, I appointed you as a prophet to the nations (Jer 1:5).  David understood this well as the Psalms declare, You created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book (Psalm 139:13-16).  Here is evidence that God sees us as a human being before birth, that He knows us even as we are “woven together” in our mother’s womb, and that even prior to our being formed (unformed body), He considered us a viable human being.  This seems to support the prohibition of abortion which is the taking of a human life.  To have an abortion would be seen as murder in God’s eyes.

Where Do the Severely Mentally Retarded or Disabled Go?

I believe there are also some examples of the fate of those who can not understand the gospel due to their severe mental retardation or disability through no fault of their own.  Someone with a severe mental retardation may have the mind of a child, even into adulthood, and so the same principle of being unable to comprehend the gospel and their realization that they are presently separated from God by their sin can not be understood.  God, knowing the heart and mind of each one of these, would not expect them to be held accountable.  They can not be accountable for something that they can not possibly understand, just as a baby could not.

Jesus often met with many who had demon possessions and those who had no mental capacity to understand the gospel due to this possession.  Notice that, “News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed, and he healed them (Luke 8:27).  Those who are having seizures or paralyzed could also be those who are under duress due to mental retardation or disability.  When Jesus healed them, they then seemed able to understand Who Jesus was and what their state was like in Luke chapter 8.  What did the man who had Jesus exorcise the demon from him do?  The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him (Luke 8:38-39). Apparently this man now became a witness for Jesus Christ and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him.”

We can see that those who die in infancy, those who are still-born, those who’ve been aborted, those toddlers, babies, and young children who die before the age of accountability are not condemned but will be in the Kingdom.  They will not be judged as guilty and condemned.  David understood that when he and Bathsheba lost their baby, the baby could not come to them but he would go to him.  That day has probably already occurred since David is with the Lord now and will rule with Christ.  David has seen the child again.  David did go to him.  He went to him because he could not come back to David on earth.  Isn’t that just like a loving God?  A loving God Who desires that you too can come to Him while it is still called today (2 Cor 6:2). That is my prayer for you right now.

If you would like to read a more, in-depth analysis on this subject, I invite you to read “Do Babies Go To Heaven?, Why Does God Allow Suffering?

Other Articles You Might Be Interested in Reading:

Resources:
New International Version Bible (NIV)
THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide



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{ 69 comments… read them below or add one }

SURRAIYA FAZL June 7, 2012 at 10:07 am

GOOD INSPIRATION FROM THE BIBLE GOD BLESS

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Jack Wellman June 7, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Thank you so much Surraiya. You have given the credit to where and Who it goes…God and His Word, the Bible.

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Pepper June 7, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Sir, in this the word “succoured” is used. I can’t find its definition in any of my dictionaries. What is its meaning?

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Jack Wellman June 7, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Thank you Pepper. I was looking for the word “succoured” in this article but could not find it. Do you know where you found it? Did you mean succor? Succor means “help or assistance, esp in time of difficulty” and “a person or thing that provides help.”

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Dereck June 8, 2012 at 12:15 am

Good article Jack,

I do have one question, in Luke 8 where Jesus tells the man that he healed that he could not come with him, but, to go and tell people what God has done for him. The man goes out and tells people what Jesus has done for him. I am sure that God knew that this would happen. Was this some of the evidence that the sanheadren used to convict Jesus before the crusifiction?

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Jack Wellman June 8, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Hi Dereck. I believe that Jesus wanted this man to proclaim that the Messiah had arrived. No doubt that the Sanhedrin used this against Jesus later and He knew in advance that this would happen. Great point my friend. Your very perceptive my friend.

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Chris Martel June 8, 2012 at 7:56 pm

Hello Jack,

As always, a superb article that is timely and relevant. I knew in my heart that these little ones would be with Jesus in Heaven, but seeing the literal proof and scriptures that confirm this has been as a salve to my soul. Every day, sometimes many times a day, I say a prayer for those poor souls who were murdered in their mothers wombs, again seeing through scripture that these innocents would be with the Lord in Heaven makes an intolerable situation, still intolerable! My apologies Jack, there is nothing good to come out of the slaughter of God’s littlest children, these children were arbitrarily denied the most basic human right in the world, the right to life. What really ticks me off is that the liberals encourage this slaughter, but they will put a person in jail for killing a dog on the street!! A dog, Jack, a dog has more standing than a human being, there are not enough words in the world to speak of this unceasing horror. I have been told that to get angry is a sin, if that be the case I am PROUD of this sin, we should all be angry and horrified at what is being done to babies. Somehow I can’t picture Jesus being kind to those unrepentant butchers come the final judgement.
Jack, you DO have a way of bringing issues to a razor sharp focus, I look forward to your posts, and even the posts that bring anguish to my heart are necessary, we must all know the truth, and we must all strive to protect those who cannot protect themselves.

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Jack Wellman June 8, 2012 at 8:03 pm

Thank you so much Chris. The Bible actually teaches that we can be angry but we are also told not to sin in doing so. There are some things in this world that should make a Christian angry. There is so much injustice, robbing of widows by schemes, the abuse of children, and violence against the defenseless like abortion. To me it is clearly murder and breaking the 6th Commandment.

Paul actually commands us to be angry, believe it or not, by saying, “Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger” (Eph 4:26). This is an imperative command Paul gives to be angry…but it is conditional. Don’t let the “sun go down on your anger.” In other words, get angry but get over it and, “do not give the devil a foothold” (Eph 4:27a).

Some things ought to make us angry in this world and we actually have written an article that should be published shortly called “Can a Christian Be Angry and Not Sin? Is it Biblical to Be Angry?” The answer to both of these is yes of course. For those who support abortion they should thank God that their mother didn’t, for they would have no breath for which to be pro-anything! It is not pro-choice because the baby has no choice at all…it is “no-choice” or “pro-abortion.” I choose to support life and am very strongly pro-life for God is the author of it and only He has the God-given right to take it.

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Agartha June 12, 2012 at 3:06 pm

I think I now have some stuff for some christian brothers and sisters who think that babies should be baptized. Thanks a lot for this article.

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Jack Wellman June 12, 2012 at 4:09 pm

Agartha, thank you for your comment. As for babies being baptized, the only time a person in the Bible is baptized is when they are adults or old enough to understand. The Bible teaches us to repent and be baptized and you will receive the Holy Spirit and be saved. How can a baby repent? How can they understand the gospel. Besides, being baptized in no way makes a person go to heaven. Even so, I appreciate your comment. Your Christian brothers and sister who feel that babies should be baptized should read this comment and let us know what they think. To be baptized means you have repented of your sins and place your trust in Christ to save you. Again, how can a baby do this?

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Agartha June 12, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Hello Jack Wellman
Could you please help me understand this, are souls judged immediately after people die, or they are resting somewhere until judgement day? If they are resting until judgement day where are the good souls and the sinful souls until then.

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Jack Wellman June 12, 2012 at 4:12 pm

After a person dies, like Lazarus and the rich man shows in the parable, the unsaved spirit go into a state of punishment awaiting final judgment when Christ returns to judge them in Revelation 20 and the saved spirit go to be with the Lord. Then after Christ’s return, the bodies of the saved are joined with their spirit and the unsaved with there to either be in the Kingdom of heaven or into the lake of fire…both forever.

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MARK OFORI NYARKO June 13, 2012 at 4:27 am

thank you Jack, thats very informative and educative, prooving all assertions with God’s word, God bless.

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Jack Wellman June 13, 2012 at 4:35 pm

Mark, thank you so much sir for your very kind words. May God bless you and please come back soon Mark.

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kevin June 15, 2012 at 12:46 pm

when do you think the age of accountability is reached?
is it as soon as a child knows right from wrong or when they understand that they need a savior?
do animals also suffer from the original sin?

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Jack Wellman June 15, 2012 at 3:10 pm

Kevin, thank you for your question. The Bible does not specify a specific time that a person reaches the age of accountability. It could be later for some and earlier for others. Maybe at 18 for some, for others, 22, but for babies, infants, and toddlers and even young children, they are not able to understand the gospel and know how to repent from their sins, so yes sir, you are right. From the time that they know right from wrong and that they have the knowledge that they need a Savior. Well stated Kevin.

Animals suffer from the fall of man so yes, in a sense, they do suffer from the original sin since God put a curse on the ground after Adam and Eve’s sin.

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sharla June 18, 2012 at 10:11 pm

What if someone has never been exposed to Christianity? Can they be denied entry into Heaven if they were never given the chance to know it existed?

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Jack Wellman June 19, 2012 at 3:56 pm

Great questions Sharla. We actually have an article about this very subject at:

http://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com/what-happens-to-people-that-have-not-heard-the-gospel-of-jesus/

If you read Romans chapter one and two you can see the answer to this. People don’t go to hell because they have not heard the gospel…they go there because they are sinners. I was saved by God’s grace without a witness, save for the Bible I read in Prison. The amazing thing is not that everyone has a conscience and is accountable for their life, but that anyone of us can be saved at all. All glory to Jesus Christ. Read the article and see if it answers your question more fully. Thank you Sharla.

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Oshilim Harrison September 13, 2012 at 5:01 am

Please give me guide on evangelism message.

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Jack Wellman September 13, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Hello Oshilim. Thank you for your comment. We do not have an evangelism message guide. If you type into the “Search” box and type in “evangelism” or “witnessing” we have several articles on how to evangelize the lost, family, co-workers, and complete strangers. I have at least 10 evangelism trainings on You Tube that are free to download and use. They are step by step trainings on how to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the lost at:

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheJackWellman

They are near the bottom of the webpage on the above link. Please let me know if this help you Oshilim.

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Ty October 26, 2012 at 12:13 pm

Thank you! I just heard about the murder of a 10 month old girl whose parents may not be Christians, so I was struggling with her soul.

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christopher November 5, 2012 at 12:42 pm

SIR Jack! U are awesome and may God increase the wisdom of his word in you. Am really amazed by your explanations.

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Patrice December 16, 2012 at 5:56 pm

My question is this, if God knows what you are going to do before you do it. Wount he know if any child that dies was going to do something horribly sinful at the age of reason? Ex: you die at age 6, but down the road say you lived and at 18 rapped someone. If, God sees the beginning and the end he would know what path that child was going to take.

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Jack Wellman December 16, 2012 at 6:01 pm

Yes He would know the path but if they die at age 6 then there would be no path down the road for God knows that a child will die at age 6 and so the “down the road” will never happen. But if you are saying that at 18 he will rap someone, God knows that too but He is not responsible for we are free, moral agents and all make our own choices. I know of a person who I worked with and he was a product of a rapped mother but thank God that he was not aborted. So, even in evil, good can come from that because this guy is an awesome, godly man and a good person and one of my best friends. I also know some who, when I was young and in prison from being a drug addict and thief, came to saving faith while in prison so the evil of our crimes brought us eternal life in Christ. Does this make sense?

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John December 23, 2012 at 3:00 pm

holy Law of God – What is the holy law of god? Is it just believing in the trinity?

1 John 1:9 – Who is “we”? How is one “faithful? This verse never states babies are excluded

Deuteronomy 1:39 – This doesn’t imply that the children will go to heaven or hell. All it implies is that the children will be allowed to enter the promised lands on earth.

Isaiah 7:14-16 (and all the verses pertaining to Jesus christ birth)- These verse are in reference to JESUS CHRIST. According to Christianity, At this particular point in time, Jesus Christ was just born has not yet sacrificed himself for all of mankinds sins. Therefore baptism does not apply. Secondly, the rulings don’t apply to Jesus Christ as if it were then you would have to consider Jesus Christ being born sinful which is a complete contradiction of the Christians views on Jesus Christ as you would be associating your views that he “son of god” is sinful.

2 Samuel 12:23 – you’ve taken this verse completly out of context. You failed to mention the previous verses the the lord struck the child with illness for the child to die. Then the verse that you mentioned, you only stated ‘I will go to him” but you didn’t explain the second part “but he will not return to me” This verse is not in reference to the afterlife, this verse is saying David will go to his dead child but he will not come to him because his dead. It has nothing to do with the after life. Everything is in reference to this world.

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Jack Wellman December 23, 2012 at 7:30 pm

John, thank you sir for your comment. Where do babied go to when they die then? Can you reveal where to in Scripture?

If David said I will go to him, where is his child at? I DID explain part two of the verse and you took it out of context yourself. It is obvious that the child can not “return to me” or to David because he can not return from where the child is. Where is the child now do you thinK? The Lord struck the child yes, but that has absolutely nothing to do with where the child is now or that David can go to him. David will go to him someday and isn’t David going to rule with Christ and since David will rule with Christ, David will be with his child in the Kingdom of Heaven. How do you explain this. It is crystal clear to me sir using proper context of Scripture.

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John December 24, 2012 at 8:23 am

Did it mention that the baby was not baptized???? David committed adultery and is still going to heaven because he was baptized therefore christ freed him of his sins. So regardless of how the baby is conceived, even through adultery if the baby was baptized then the baby is saved from sin. There is no mention if the baby is baptized or not. Therefore you can’t make the assumption that the baby was baptized since it was never mentioned. Its just wishful thinking on your part without any proof. Your also flipping the order of the last sentence sentence. He says he will go to him first, then the baby will not return to him. Meaning David will go to him when he is dead (FIRST – ON THIS WORLD), but the BABY WILL NOT RETURN TO HIM (AFTERLIFE). So if you make the claim the david is going to heaven in the afterlife the baby won’t be there since the baby will not return to him. Nice try but its pretty troubling that one has to work so hard to try to justify that an “innocent baby will go to heaven” according to the bible, when it’s pretty clear that more evidence is towards an unbaptized baby going to hell. Even with many assumptions that you make you still can’t prove it. If we use your methodology of picking and choosing verses out of context then trying to make some parrallel between them, we can easily justify slavery especially against africans.

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John December 24, 2012 at 9:02 am

Furthermore, The story of David was before the time of Christ therefore the rules of baptism don’t even apply. They only apply after the death of Christ. Rulings changed after the death of Christ. In order to prove your point you would have to use stories after Christ crusification (according to christianity). Which you failed to use.

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Dereck December 24, 2012 at 10:01 am

Hello John,

I have a question, are you saying that a person must be baptized before they can go to heaven?

Dereck

Jack Wellman December 24, 2012 at 11:47 am

John, I hope you have a good day. I see that you seem to require baptism to be saved…and I assume only a Jehovah Witness baptism. I never saw anywhere where it says David was baptized and now you are saying because the baby that David and Bathsheba lost is not going to heaven either because he was not baptized. If baptism is required to save, then I see you believe Jesus’ dead on the cross was just not quite enough. I wish you the best. I pray for you. I am finished debating.

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John December 24, 2012 at 1:22 pm

Hi Jack, I was trying to make a point. The story of David according to the christianity was 1000 years before Christ. Baptism wasn’t applicable, as the rulings were different. Regardless how you interpret that story, according to christianity the rulings changed AFTER christ entered this earth. You should know that. So rulings before christ may not apply after christ. do you still eat pork? Deuteromy 14:8 The pig is also unclean; although it has a split hoof, it does not chew the cud. You are not to eat their meat or touch their carcasses. should women cover their head For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, Corinthians 11:2-16 since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. These ruling all changed in the new testament.

Dam February 18, 2013 at 9:52 am

Hi Pastor: I found your article while preparing to continue witnessing to my sister, Mary, who is very ill. She, like me, as raised Catholic, but turned her back on God following the death of her 8 year old daughter, Amy, who had been severely deformed and mentally disabled from birth. My sister cared for her and loved her evey day of Amy’s short life. life.

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Dam February 18, 2013 at 10:06 am

This is continued regarding my sister. She now claims not to believe, and though. the two of us share a very loving relationship, her heart is hardened. I suspect that she is angry at God and “conveys her non-belief” as an outlet. Or maybe she is truly simply agnostic. I doubt she is truly atheistic. My two other siblings and I have come to know Christ as our Lord and savior. Thank- you gor your article. It may help us, along with prayer and the Holy Spirit, in reaching our dear sister before she is gone grom this earth. If you can offee any advice, please let me know, but I wanted to thank you. Love, Dan

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Jack Wellman February 18, 2013 at 11:17 am

No one can be a believer and then not be one so I wonder if she truly ever came to put her trust in Christ. Yes, she may be more agnostic but know that God can change this woman’s heart (Prov 21:1) and nothing is too hard for God nor is anything impossible so all we and you can do is to pray for her, show her love in all ways that is unconditional and that the Holy Spirit brings her under conviction to repent and believe in Jesus Christ. Don’t give up…pray daily for her, trust in God for God’s timing is always best. Sometimes our heartaches must happen to bring us to our knees and crush our pride because God resists the proud (and angry) but gives grace only to the humble.

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Pat May 10, 2013 at 6:21 am

When we are reunited with children in heaven, will they have the body of a child or that of an adult?

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Jack Wellman May 10, 2013 at 1:37 pm

Pat, I don’t know since the Bible is silent on this. I can only guess. I am sorry that I could not help you more on this Pat. Some theologians and Bible scholars believe that they will be at the peak of the human physical body, which would put them at about 30 to 32 years of age, but again I don’t know. Thank you for your question.

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Tramon Walker July 29, 2013 at 12:09 am

Mark 12:25

For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as the angels which are in heaven.

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judyellen July 2, 2013 at 4:26 pm

I am just revisiting this very relevant and inspirational article! We have an awesome God! In fact there are no words in the human language to fully describe his unmerited love for us. I can only stand speechless and in Awe of our amazing God who is not willing to see anyone perish!! Thanks for writing on matters that we need to help us learn to walk with Christ! Judy E. Harrell

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Jack Wellman July 2, 2013 at 6:07 pm

Judy…my female version of Barnabas, you are such a delight to know and can not wait to meet you in person in the Kingdom of Heaven. Thank you so much.

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Maggie July 5, 2013 at 5:04 pm

I came across your article while researching for my masters thesis which will be on fetal infants, infants, children and mentally challenged going to heaven prior to accepting Jesus. I am finding so many different things to read and look into. Due to having been pronounced dead on scene in a motor vehicle accident 4 years ago, I have my own experience, which I am not putting into the thesis. But I found your article to be very thought provoking and interesting. Do you have a website where I can explore more articles or talk to you more about this topic? Thanks for any help

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Jack Wellman July 6, 2013 at 6:31 pm

Thank you Maggie. I wish I had more for you on this subject but there is a book on Amazon in paperback or eBook or in the Kindle version of the book that is called
Do Babies Go To Heaven?/Why Does God Allow Suffering? that is a more broader look at this subject. It is a very inexpensive paperback. If you enter a search and use the words “Do Babies Go To Heaven?/Why Does God Allow Suffering?” and you’ll find it. Otherwise, I can send a free eBook of this to you even though it took me about 1 & 1/2 years to put it together.

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Jimmy July 26, 2013 at 4:13 pm

My daughter passed away this year she was 14 years old. She passed away unexpectedly in her sleep. At the age of 9 years old she asked our pastor to lead her in a prayer of salvation. The next day Sunday she was Baptized.
Her mother took her away from me because she did not like my southern baptist views. Her mother was into all kinds of weird cults, and she did not want my daughter to lead a Christian life. I did not get to see her for two years leading up to her death, I just got a phone call from the medical examiner telling me she was dead. Do you think she is in the presence of the Lord today?

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Jack Wellman July 26, 2013 at 4:33 pm

Hello Jimmy. Please accept my condolences sir. I am so very sorry. I cried when I read this for I myself am a father and grandfather. For those who will or have believed in Jesus Christ, He says, “”I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die” (John 11:25). Since Jesus is God and we know that God can not lie, then yes, your daughter is with the Lord presently for Paul wrote in 2 Cor 5:8 that he was “confident that to be away from the body is to be home with the Lord.” There is no doubt that she is presently with the Lord and no doubt, in a much, much better place. If you yourself are born again, then have assurance that you will see her again. Again, I am deeply sorry sir.

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faith August 26, 2013 at 6:39 am

Remember too. Our anger shouldn’t be directed at people. We don’t fight flesh and blood. But evil in the Spirit. So spiritual fight for Truth and Lies. Not physical fight of Good and Bad. No-one is Good on this Earth apart of God. Everyone is used by Satan unaware as pawns. Think of these poor souls weak and helpless and lost being controlled by their puppet master. That’s why we should also Love our enemies. We want to save them from the Clutches of evil and bring them to Heaven too. Babies are saved from evil. Focus on those who are not. And remember everything evil that happens to People and Children are done by Satan to try limit of their chances to be saved. But God is always one step ahead of Satan. and He has shown me He can turn that bad around to good. The bigger the bad the bigger the gift and glory of God’s love and goodness. The more we who has suffered the more we will see who God it and God’s Love and glory. In the bible, I think God’s reminding me of this, I read this before and God’s using it to help me see now that God allows things to happen to us nothing Satan can do with out God’s approval and God will approve cut not find any joy in our suffering as he knows his plan for us so those murdered or not may be snatched up for a reason, in the bible a man asked Jesus who did sin to make the other man blind. Jesus told him no-one. He was born blind for a purpose. And clearly Jesus healed the blind man and he spread the news I’d inclined and is saved. I believe these scriptures are there and still stand today to show us God’s plan for the needy and disabled, etc. God can heal us like he hat me and it allows us to be more humble before God more loving toward God and others and for us to see God for who he really is like they saw Him while he was on the earth. God walked among us and called the children to him remember and also healed those disfigured. He can give us a new body now in Heaven and save those no matter what they suffer from. remember also God doesn’t turn away from the needy. He’s not ashamed of them or thinking that’s them ruined for a chance to be saved. he’s got more mercy just and pity on the weak like us. so he must have a great much more on the unable. we see poor and can walk away. God can’t walk away from the poor. It’s not his nature.

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faith August 26, 2013 at 7:01 am

oh I need to note. thank you for this Jack. I’m lacking self worth and got little depression past couple of days and trying to find away to God again through it. n more I read in bible the more I misinterpreted it n I just gave me more self worth issues, like deformed was in there but that they couldn’t stand in the presence of God now I know for sure those are examples of sin and corruption and sin can’t stand b4 God n live. now Jesus shows us we are loved though we may be partially deaf poor vision mental health or what not and we can be freed from the corruption of sin that leads to these which now I can see are there to make us feel more unworthy more selfish n keep us from being saved but are actually God’s way of allowing us to grow and be saved. I want to mention Satan is allowed to do what he pleases for unsaved because they are cursed. so if we turn from God not depend on him etc it gives Satan legal permission to do what he wants within reason though. that explains the demon attacks I’m having. nightmares, depression doubt n self worth issues. a couple of sins later and Satan swoops right in there. but hold on and depend on God. we can’t control everything and God’s shaping us more like Him. so remain in Him and that bad will be turned into good. and your reward will be in heaven.

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Jack Wellman August 26, 2013 at 5:36 pm

Faith, even the Devil is God’s Devil and he can not dominate our lives if we have trusted in Christ. We will suffer from spiritual attacks but when we are under attack, that means that we are either trying overcome sin, read and understand the Bible or be sharing our faith…even more when we do all three. We are not helpless victims of the Devil though. When we are made to feel unworthy, that is the Devil, when we are convicted of sin, that is the Holy Spirit. The Devil makes us feel condemned while God makes us want to repent of sin we commit but the Holy Spirit never, ever brings up past sins that have been forgiven. That is the enemy. I would suggest you talk to your pastor….tell him what you are going thru and feeling. Pray, fast occasionally, get a good Study Bible to better understand the Bible and don’t let the enemy make you feel worthless.

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Jimmy August 26, 2013 at 5:59 pm

Jack,
You are 100 percent correct with everything you wrote. I get attacked the worst when I am trying to understand something in the Bible or when I witness. I have only been reading this website for a month or so but you and your website has helped me tremendously understand some key issues that the devil did not want me to understand. We are truly blessed to have you and your website.

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Jack Wellman August 26, 2013 at 6:21 pm

Thanks Jimmy…. it is good to be attacked because we at least know Who’s side we are on and it with God a majority can even be one! Thank you sir. You are word exhort me to do more for Him, edify me to be strong in His Word, and encourage me to continue on…what I call the Three E-migos! LOL Edifying, exhorting, and encouraging… you are all three brother!

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Jimmy August 26, 2013 at 8:25 pm

Jack,
Iron sharpens Iron……
Amen

faith August 26, 2013 at 7:05 am

I just read yours jimmy. I’m sorry.

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faith August 26, 2013 at 7:21 am

also quick note that anger part is for any anger you feel but originally I wrote it for the abortions I read at th top th anger on those parents. those babies are in heaven but those parents are lost. focus on them. clearly God is incontrol so he knew those babys will be taken to heaven. and I also think or know from what I read in the start of the bible about babies taken from the immorality that God took David’s baby so the kid wouldn’t grow up thinking n knowing that adultery is normal or Atleast that’s what it says in exodus about immorality like those auntie and nephew kind of thing. I guess then he wanted the new land to be holy and pure and corrupt. but so today he expects Christians to be also.

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Tom September 11, 2013 at 9:20 pm

Jack,
First time reader. You have a kind, pastor’s heart, I can tell. I’ve been wrestling with this issue since before our first-born arrived. I attended Southwestern Sem, where the general answer is in line with what you’ve expressed. Just today I re-entered the debate with some friends about to travel the world with the good news. Their initial comments concerned “exclusivism / inclusivism”, that is, will there be some saved who never heard a gospel witness. I changed the topic, introducing this one, namely, that fetuses, infants, and basically all who die without hearing the gospel, will be condemned.
That said, I know you and many here will see mine as a minority opinion. Like James Bozeman, I would like to believe that God is wonderfully kind to this special group of people. God sent his Son to save the world, not to condemn it. However, the seemingly exclusive method of salvation is preaching and believing the gospel. That parents brought their infants to Jesus for a blessing shows the parents faith, and hints at a doctrine for infant baptism or baby dedication, showing the parents’ desire for the baby to enjoy God’s protection and provision. Many nowadays follow this up with youth camps, VBS, or confirmation ceremonies which is similar to Jewish Bar / Bat Mitzvah, all of which suppose an explanation, understanding and response to God’s Message. If this is what tradition points at, it seems, as James Bozeman was saying, that there is no clear doctrine regarding infants’ salvation, only that God knows them in the womb. Deuteronomy, which you quoted, goes on to indicate the parents’ duties to impart instruction and zeal to the best of their abilities to their children. Regarding a child’s individual moral responsibility, they certainly don’t know what they do. Romans 1:18 says that God’s wrath is revealed from heaven against every wicked thing people do as they suppress the truth by immoral living. Furthermore, what they can deduce about God comes from their cognizant observations of nature. Certainly Paul is describing adults later in the chapter. If we try to glean doctrines in this area about baby salvation, we will only muddy the waters. For example, v. 6 God will pay all people for what they have done”. Babies are included in this as people. v. 7 God will give everlasting life to those who search for glory, honor, etc.” Babies have not likely sought these things, nor have the mentally incompetent. v. 12 gives the reason, that “whoever sins without having God’s laws will still be condemned to destruction”. The majority defends the babies on the point that they have not sinned, and are incapable of sinning. Chapter 3 portrays the worthlessness of mature sinners. Paul concludes in v. 28 that a person has God’s approval by faith, not by his own efforts.” After addressing this issue, I feel I must conclude that the Bible clearly states that salvation, eternal life, is granted to those who believe in the saving work of Jesus Christ and call on him as Lord. The Bible is not clear on the issue of “baby salvation”. The overwhelming majority of content addresses people mature enough to repent from sin and believe in Jesus. The verses used to fabricate this doctrine come from a few unclear OT sections and, as a new dad I admit, a dreadful desire that our precious babies not be cast into eternal torment.
Lastly, I mean to address this issue because my friends’ zealous passion to evangelize adults is commendable, but does not seem to consider the needs of people ~3 and up. The gospel is only good news to those who hear it. Whether or not those ~3 and under hear or understand it, our clarion call from our Master is to take this announcement world wide, trusting in his final judgment, not our own lightweight suppositions. Ultimately, I join in a vague hope, that Christ will intercede for the billions of tiny souls that have died up to this moment, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”

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Devin September 13, 2013 at 9:34 pm

So aborting babies is good. Theres a 2/7 chance they will be christain (2bill christains out of 7 bill people). Aborting them gaurentees there salvation!

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Jack Wellman September 14, 2013 at 9:14 am

Aborting babies is good? Wow, how can you say that Devin? Are you a Christian? Based upon your reasoning that aborting babies guarantees them salvation then it would be “good” as you said about killing babies (which is what abortion is) would make it okay to kill Christian adults right after they are saved because they are guaranteed salvation. Do you see my point sir?

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henry October 8, 2013 at 4:22 am

Ma sins and the sins of my children to come were already forgiven @ the cross.

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Bruce October 13, 2013 at 11:20 am

Thanks Mr. Wellman for this article. It was very well done. There are many groups of people who have missed the opportunity to accept the gospel. Babies, mentally disabled, and even the billions of people who live in countries where Christianity is not taught and even forbidden. So will a just and loving God just condemn all of those groups of people? Or has he provided a way for them to accept the gospel on the other side? I strongly believe he has and it is recorded in the scriptures.
The scriptures teach of a state that exists between our life on earth and our final destination of heaven or hell often called paradise or spirit prison where the gospel is preached to those who did not have a chance to accept the gospel in this life and be baptized.
Jesus spoke to the sinner on the cross beside him.

Luke 23:43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.
1 Peter 3:19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;
1 Peter 4;6 For this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

So if they are taught the Gospel during this timeframe what about the scriptures that say one must be baptized in order for them to return to live with God.

John 3;5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

Mark 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

This would also cause a problem because if baptism is essential for salvation how can someone who is dead be baptized? I believe that is why some churches practice an infant baptism because they believe if anyone dies without being baptised they are damned. However there is a problem with that. How can someone truly accept Christ if they do not have an understanding of him? They can’t! I agree with you in your understanding of the age of accountability but that still poses the problem of all needing to be baptized in order to return to heaven. I believe God has made a bridge for all of those people in which we are talking about. That bridge is baptisms for the dead which is a doctrine that not many know about or understand but in it lies the way for all of those people who have never heard or understood the Gospel of Jesus Christ can accept it and receive the essential ordinance of baptism performed by someone vicariously for them. Here are the scriptures.

1 Corinthians 15:29 Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?

2 Maccabees 12:45And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them.
46 It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sin.

God wants us all to return to live with him. His gospel is perfect and unchanging. Men from the beginning have chosen not to accept his gospel and their punishment will be just and is still being felt by the billions on earth who will not have the opportunity to receive the great blessings one gains though living the gospel in this life. However because God is just and loving all of his children will have an opportunity to accept his gospel and return to Him though it may not be in this earthly life.
Yours Truly
Bruce

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Jack Wellman October 13, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Thank you so very much Bruce. You make an excellent exposition in your comment alone that is worthy of publishing. Wow. Very insightful. I open to Rev 20:11-15 and see that people are judged according to the deeds that they have done in their lifetime and judged out of these things and so an infant, still-born, young child, mentally inabled are not capable of and how can a young child even know what sin is? Also, they are told to repent and believe in Christ and to put their trust in Him but this isn’t intellectually possible with babies…so I agree that they are given a special dispensation of grace by God Who gives to each what they deserve. Rom 1 & 2 shows that they are without excuse and they suppress the knowledge of God…not possible for the very young. Thank you for adding so much to this discussion Bruce.

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Bruce October 13, 2013 at 10:30 pm

Mr. Wellman I also appreciate your comment. You are very wise one this topic. I believe the spirit has led you to your belief on the salvation of infants. I truly believe that infant baptism and the belief that God would condemn the innocent among us to hell is an abomination in his eyes and is one of those precious truths that has been lost by the hand of men. I know you do not believe this book to be true however the topic of infant baptism is one of the doctrines that is clearly taught within its pages, and I know you will agree with what it says.
4 And now, my son, I speak unto you concerning that which grieveth me exceedingly; for it grieveth me that there should disputations rise among you.
5 For, if I have learned the truth, there have been disputations among you concerning the baptism of your little children.
6 And now, my son, I desire that ye should labor diligently, that this gross error should be removed from among you; for, for this intent I have written this epistle.
7 For immediately after I had learned these things of you I inquired of the Lord concerning the matter. And the word of the Lord came to me by the power of the Holy Ghost, saying:
8 Listen to the words of Christ, your Redeemer, your Lord and your God. Behold, I came into the world not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance; the whole need no physician, but they that are sick; wherefore, little children are whole, for they are not capable of committing sin; wherefore the curse of Adam is taken from them in me, that it hath no power over them; and the law of circumcision is done away in me.
9 And after this manner did the Holy Ghost manifest the word of God unto me; wherefore, my beloved son, I know that it is solemn mockery before God, that ye should baptize little children.
10 Behold I say unto you that this thing shall ye teach—repentance and baptism unto those who are accountable and capable of committing sin; yea, teach parents that they must repent and be baptized, and humble themselves as their little children, and they shall all be saved with their little children.
11 And their little children need no repentance, neither baptism. Behold, baptism is unto repentance to the fulfilling the commandments unto the remission of sins.
12 But little children are alive in Christ, even from the foundation of the world; if not so, God is a partial God, and also a changeable God, and a respecter to persons; for how many little children have died without baptism!
13 Wherefore, if little children could not be saved without baptism, these must have gone to an endless hell.
14 Behold I say unto you, that he that supposeth that little children need baptism is in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity; for he hath neither faith, hope, nor charity; wherefore, should he be cut off while in the thought, he must go down to hell.
15 For awful is the wickedness to suppose that God saveth one child because of baptism, and the other must perish because he hath no baptism.
16 Wo be unto them that shall pervert the ways of the Lord after this manner, for they shall perish except they repent. Behold, I speak with boldness, having authority from God; and I fear not what man can do; for perfect love casteth out all fear.
17 And I am filled with charity, which is everlasting love; wherefore, all children are alike unto me; wherefore, I love little children with a perfect love; and they are all alike and partakers of salvation.
18 For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable from all eternity to all eternity.
19 Little children cannot repent; wherefore, it is awful wickedness to deny the pure mercies of God unto them, for they are all alive in him because of his mercy.
20 And he that saith that little children need baptism denieth the mercies of Christ, and setteth at naught the atonement of him and the power of his redemption.
21 Wo unto such, for they are in danger of death, hell, and an endless torment. I speak it boldly; God hath commanded me. Listen unto them and give heed, or they stand against you at the judgment-seat of Christ.
22 For behold that all little children are alive in Christ, and also all they that are without the law. For the power of redemption cometh on all them that have no law; wherefore, he that is not condemned, or he that is under no condemnation, cannot repent; and unto such baptism availeth nothing—
23 But it is mockery before God, denying the mercies of Christ, and the power of his Holy Spirit, and putting trust in dead works.
24 Behold, my son, this thing ought not to be; for repentance is unto them that are under condemnation and under the curse of a broken law.
25 And the first fruits of repentance is baptism; and baptism cometh by faith unto the fulfilling the commandments; and the fulfilling the commandments bringeth remission of sins;
26 And the remission of sins bringeth meekness, and lowliness of heart; and because of meekness and lowliness of heart cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter filleth with hope and perfect love, which love endureth by diligence unto prayer, until the end shall come, when all the saints shall dwell with God.
27 Behold, my son, I will write unto you again if I go not out soon against the Lamanites. Behold, the pride of this nation, or the people of the Nephites, hath proven their destruction except they should repent.
28 Pray for them, my son, that repentance may come unto them. But behold, I fear lest the Spirit hath ceased striving with them; and in this part of the land they are also seeking to put down all power and authority which cometh from God; and they are denying the Holy Ghost.
29 And after rejecting so great a knowledge, my son, they must perish soon, unto the fulfilling of the prophecies which were spoken by the prophets, as well as the words of our Savior himself.
30 Farewell, my son, until I shall write unto you, or shall meet you again. Amen.

This passage comes from the Book of Mormon, Moroni chapter 8
Truth is truth no matter where it comes from. I am interested in your honest opinion of the doctrines found in these verses. I don’t think it could be more clearer than that which is expressed in these verses.
Thanks
Bruce

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John October 17, 2013 at 10:27 pm

Bruce, who is the writer of those verses? How do you know that they were inspired by God to call them scripture?
John

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John Urbanowicz March 20, 2014 at 12:10 pm

Sin is a conceptual disease. Truly accepting what was done for us on the cross is the perfect cure. The key words for truly obtaining that perfect cure are “truly accepting.”

Your usage of Psalm 58 (as a pillar for the concept of original sin — a concept that is not supported by the words of Jesus Christ) is terribly slanted. David is speaking strictly in the simplest terms of fate; in that the path of any man (including the path of the wicked) begins by being formed in the womb. A newborn infant is incapable of “speaking lies.” As is clearly indicated by your proper use of Deuteronomy 1:39.

Little children do not have the disease… yet. Key word is “little.” For they have no knowledge whatsoever of good and evil. It is only upon gaining the knowledge of good and evil that we take on the conception of this thinking disease called “sin.” For along with the knowledge of good and evil come judgments. Man judges everything in terms of good and evil — including himself.

A little child doesn’t need the cure, for he has not the disease. That is exactly why Jesus specifically used a LITTLE CHILD as an example to all of us. “Unless you change and become like little children, you cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” (Matthew 18:3)

Your statement is not exactly true, where you stated: “There is not a person that has ever lived that is righteous or seeks after God on his or her own, with the exception of Jesus Christ.” Actually, the truth is: it is astronomically improbable for an accountable-adult* to be perfectly righteous by his or her own accord… but not impossible.

Consider what Jesus is talking about at Matthew 7:13-14. “Enter through the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the way leading to destruction and many are the ones entering through it. How narrow is the gate and constricted the road leading to life — and few are the ones finding it.”

Jesus is speaking in the present tense: “few are the ones finding it.” Keep in mind, He hasn’t died on the cross yet, affording anyone perfect grace YET, so…

Who are these few?

The ones who are perfect, of course. Perfection is the measure for entering through the narrow gate. Those who are totally without sin.

It’s a short list.

There are four human beings (besides Jesus) that the Bible tells us are perfect by way of their own righteousness.

1) There is Noah.
Whom the Bible proclaims as “perfect” in his generations: Genesis 6:9).

2) Job.
Who is proclaimed to be “perfect” and upright: Job 1:1.

3) Daniel.
Who is guilty of “perfection” by association with Noah and Job. (Ezekiel 14:14-20). These verses in the Book of Ezekiel confirm that up to Ezekiel’s time (about 600 BC), ONLY Noah, Job and Daniel could deliver their own souls based upon their own righteousness.

Notice that Moses is not included. Not even Abraham (for Abraham is a very special case). Even the prophet Ezekiel who is the very one authorized to tell us about “The List” (and a very short one at that) is not on it himself. Only one other human being makes the grade for being on The List…

4) John the Baptist.
By Jesus’ proclamation: when Jesus said that “of all men born of a woman, from Adam to John the Baptist, none is greater than John the Baptist.” I’d say that pretty much qualifies John the Baptist’s admission into the “perfect” club — if only by the source of his nomination.

It’s a short list out of all humanity. No doubt why Jesus says that the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are the ones finding it.

These Bible verses confirm that for an accountable-adult* by his own accord to have “perfection” as the description of his righteousness (without need of relying upon the cross) is certainly not impossible (as one might infer from 1 John 1:8) but; rather, astronomically unlikely. (*Someone who has come of age therefore knowing the difference between good and evil.)

Out off all the people alive on the planet when the disciples asked Jesus, “Who on earth can be saved?” Jesus replied: “Practically speaking, no one. But— with God all things are possible.” (The Living Bible: Matthew 19:25)

Abraham is a great example for us. For, in spite of all of Abraham’s imperfections, God the Father told him to simply “Walk before Me and be perfect.” (Genesis 17:1) Of course, the NIV changes the word “perfect” to “blameless.”

That is exactly how perfection works from the power we derive from what was done for us on the cross: accepting 100%, with no “if,” “ands” or “buts” that our robes are washed perfectly clean. Actually, Jesus commands us to see it that way. “Be therefore perfect, even as your Father in Heaven is perfect.” (Matthew 5:48)

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Melissa May 2, 2014 at 12:20 am

This is why, if I ever have children in the future. I’ll not have my child (children) be baptize. If, anyone ask me why. I’ll them, where does it say in the bible for newborn babies to be baptize?

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patricia muema May 12, 2014 at 7:47 am

am blessed by your topics.God bless you and dont tire of doing good.In due season God will reward your good work.Be encouraged.Dont let those who comment negatively discourage you with their “shallow’ understanding of Gods word.

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Jack Wellman May 12, 2014 at 11:13 am

Patricia, you words are so edifying and encouraging to me and I thank you so much for your words for we need more women of faith like you in who the Spirit of God is in and living out Romans 12 and 1 Cor 13.

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Jack Wellman December 24, 2012 at 1:47 pm

Paul wrote in Col 2:16 “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:” yet you are judging those who eat port?! This was written to Jews. Are you Jewish? Are you going to keep all the Mosaic Laws and therefore recommend stoning for those who eat port? Come now. You are trapped in the old Mosaic Law and if you keep one law you are to keep all of the laws James wrote. I am finished my friend on this subject. What denomination do you attend?

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Jack Wellman December 24, 2012 at 2:06 pm

John, now you are sending innocent babies to hell before the age of accountability. I believe from henceforth, your comments are going to be deleted. Pray that you seek understanding that baptism does not save but Jesus alone does (Acts 4:12, Rom 10:9-13). Good bye and may God richly bless you with understanding.

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Jack Wellman December 24, 2012 at 2:40 pm

John, your comment was deleted because you said that the Old Testament is no longer valid or any good even though the Old Testament is what Jesus read out of and so Paul also taught from and said, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right” (2 Tim 3:16). Are you greater than Paul? Are you an Apostle? How can you declare the Old Testament invalid? We here at this website are given to defending the veracity of ALL Scripture and ALL of the Bible. I pray you repent and for the readers who didn’t see the comment that was deleted, it was heresy declaring the Old Testament is not valid today.

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Fr James Bozeman February 20, 2013 at 3:07 pm

Hi, jack. Thank you for this post. I understand the spirit of your explanation, even though I can’t, as an Eastern Orthodox Christian, accept your conclusions. As one of my friends (who was an evangelical pastor) would say, “If there truly is such a thing as an “age of accountability”, then our duty as parents would be to kill our infant children as soon as possible to insure that they would go to heaven.”

This may be a bit extreme, as it involves the concept of a parent murdering their children, so take it with a grain of salt. But I think that he did have a point. If there is an “age of accountability” and all infants (by virtue of being an infant/child lower than the age limit) get a free pass into heaven, then what point is there in taking a chance that they may someday do something to earn their way into hell? That was my pastor friend’s point.

My own personal feeling is that such non-scriptural concepts like an age of accountability are both inadequate and unnecessary for us. Holy Scripture tells us, illustrates for us, and nearly shouts at us that we serve a good and perfect God. No person enters hell apart from His justice and for the sake of His mercy. Why should we attempt to play God and get involved in loophole games such as a “doctrine” of an age of accountability? God knows our hearts, and no one of any age will experience hell who does not somehow (in God’s perfect loving providence) belong there.

That being said, sin is real. And it is a “work” of the flesh (just as we can also do “works” of righteousness). And if we have not sinned, then at least that much cannot be held against us according to God’s judgment. To the best of our extremely limited ability, we *mere* humans may make our “best guesses” as to where the souls of infants go after death. As for myself, my belief is that generally they go to be with the Father. But then again, I am not God, and to presume to make such a call is pretty… well, presumptuous.

While I grieve when a child dies— particularly those that we understand to be innocent, such as infants or the mentally handicapped— I don’t fear for their lives after death. The God of the Bible is one who truly knows us and gives us in death what we ask for and what we have worked toward in life. He is a trustworthy God, and we need not fear that he is going to send our beloved child to hell for no apparent reason.

Thanks again for allowing a good discussion on this topic. I am a bit late to the game here, but I wanted to offer another angle on this idea.

—Father James

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Jack Wellman February 20, 2013 at 3:27 pm

Thank you sir. I appreciate your kind words. I agree that God is completely trustworthy but certain Scriptures hang in my head such as Deut 1:39. God apparently did not hold these people’s children accountable because they were too young to understand as Deuteronomy 1:39 states, “And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not yet know good from bad—they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they will take possession of it.”

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kabronica March 13, 2013 at 12:15 am

I agree with Fr James Bozeman. Deuteronomy 1:39 seems to only speak of things only on earth instead of the after life…

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